Protection This was government policy during the second half of the 1800s and into the early 1900s. Aboriginal people were removed from their traditional lands and placed on reserves (government- run) or missions (church-run). The government argument was that this was done ‘for their own protection’, as they were a ‘dying race’. It was really a policy of segregation where Aboriginal culture could be replaced by white Aboriginal children at an outback culture under the control of the mission authorities and they could be ‘civilised’ and ‘christianised’. It also allowed land previously occupied by Aborigines to become pastoral land.
Protection Aborigines had to seek permission to marry, to work or to move somewhere else to live. ‘Mixed blood’ or ‘mixed race’ children were removed from their families, the Stolen Children, and brought up with white families and taught ‘useful’ skills such as domestic work and simple trades. They were labelled as neglected and destitute and Australian governments had had a long policy of removing children ‘at risk’ from their families. ItStolen children happened on a large scale with Aboriginal children.
Assimilation This government policy was introduced in 1951 by Paul Hasluck, Federal Minister for Territories. Aborigines were encouraged to ‘think white, act white, be white’ with the intent that they would eventually live like white Australians. It forced Aborigines to totally abandon their traditional way of life if they wanted to gain access to what was offered such as a degree of freedom from the intrusions of the government in their lives on Training to be white: Kinchella boys the reserves and missions. home
Assimilation However, discrimination continued in all areas including housing, education, health and employment. Even returned Aboriginal soldiers were denied the same rights as their fellow, white, soldiers. In 1962 all Aborigines were given the right to vote in federal elections, which consolidated their voting rights in the states which had been given to them at various timesTraining to be white: Cootamundra girls between 1949 and 1961 and home had made them citizens of Australia.
Integration Occurred 1962-1967 Although assimilation still remained the words defining ‘assimilation’ were changed in 1965 which seemed to allow Aborigines to retain some of their cultural ideas, beliefs and customs, and implied a greater acceptance of their culture and relationship with the land. The granting of the vote in 1962 to all Aborigines embraced this idea The 1967 referendum, which gave the federal government power over Aboriginal affairs (instead of the states), was passed with a massive majority. The referendum also passed for Aboriginals to be counted in census.
Self Determination It was introduced during the first Whitlam government in 1972. Racial Discrimination Act had wider implications for all future Aboriginal policy makers Aborigines were to have full control over all aspects of their lives. ATSIC was established to help formulate policy. It was disbanded by John Howard. They were no longer seen as a dying race. They no longer had to be protected. They were no longer expected to assimilate or integrate. They were now full and equal citizens in the eyes of the law. Land rights and native title to traditional lands now became the major issues.
MULTICULTURALISM 1975 Racial Discrimination Act In 1976 the Fraser government passed the Aboriginal Land Rights Act. Aboriginals were allowed to claim ‘crown land’ that was not being used by other people. The Aboriginal Lands Council was set up to control this land. Several state governments passed their own Land Rights Acts which recognised Aboriginal claims to land. In 1980 a National Federation Land Councils was set up. Organisations such as this helped to bring the issue of land rights to the attention of white Australia. In 1985 Aboriginal people were given ownership of Ayers Rock, now known by its traditional name of Uluru.
Multiculturalism 1986 Eddie Mabo begins his case for Native title. In 1992 the High Court determines that the Meriam people hold native title to their land. Native Title Act of 1993 was passed and National Native Title Tribunal was established Many people feared Native Title and it was incorrectly believed that Aboriginals would be able to claim peoples “backyards” under the act. This led to legislation changes in some states. Eddie Mabo
Reconciliation In 1997 The Native Title Amendment Act was introduced making it more difficult to register a claim and limiting the areas that can be claimed under Native Title. In 1998 the first "National Sorry Day" was held, and reconciliation events were held nationally, and attended by millions people. In May 2000, a "Walk for Reconciliation" was staged in Sydney, with up to 400,000 people marching across the Sydney Harbour Bridge as a gesture of apology. 2008 Prime Minister Kevin Rudd apologizes.
Impact of Kevin Rudd’s Apology “We apologise for the laws and policies of successive Parliamentsand governments that have inflicted profound grief, suffering andloss on these our fellow Australians.We apologise especially for the removal of Aboriginal and TorresStrait Islander children from their families, their communities andtheir country.For the pain, suffering and hurt of these Stolen Generations, theirdescendants and for their families left behind, we say sorry .”http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aKWfiFp24rA